Question:How should a pastor resign his pastoral duties?
Bible Answer: Ideally, the resignation of
a pastor from his pastoral duties should be performed by a written
letter. The letter does not need to explain why he resigned. It should
be brief and to the point. The letter should be given to the designated
leader of the leadership team. If the church is small, the resignation
could be given verbally. The letter should state when his duties will
end. The entire letter does not need to be more than several sentences.
The pastor should, if possible, give at least a two week notice. There
are no biblical guidelines as to how a pastor resigns. This is purely
a courtesy to the leadership team and congregation.
In return, the leadership team should be appreciative and
give the pastor at least three months of salary. It is customary to give
a severance package. If the pastor is not leaving for another position,
the three months of salary should be increased by one additional month
for each year of ministry beyond five years since
it takes most pastors about one year to find another church. He is a
minister of God and each church should treat its pastor better than
the world treats its own. If he is leaving for another church or position,
then the three months could be reduced.
So then, while
we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, and especially
to those who are of the household of the faith. Gal 6:10 (NAS95S)
Conclusion:Churches at times treat their pastors
worse than the world treats its own. In the professional world,
employees are given severance packages and employers refrain from making
negative comments about their employees. Many employers give their employees
a farewell party and recognize their years of service. The church should
at least do the same. God has directed us to make sure that our words
are seasoned with grace (Col. 4:6). So let's be kind and gracious to
our pastors - even those resigning. We need to do better than those outside
the church - let's go overboard.